Interest rates for the first calendar quarter: January 1, 2014 to March 31, 2014

 

Tax, duty, or other charges Overdue remittances Overpaid remittances – Corporate taxpayers Overpaid remittances – Non- corporate taxpayers
Goods and services tax (GST) 5% 1% 3%
Harmonized sales tax (HST) 5% 1% 3%
Air travellers security charge 5% 1% 3%
Excise tax (non-GST/HST) 5% 1% 3%
Excise duty except brewer licensees (amounts due after June 30, 2003) 5% 1% 3%
Excise duty except brewer licensees (amounts due before July 1, 2003) 3% N/A N/A
Excise duty (brewer licensees) 3% N/A N/A
Softwood lumber products export charge 5% 1% 3%

Never Delay Filing Returns!

Whatever business we’re in, we’ve usually got our hands so full that’s it’s easy to overlook or delay important government filing requirements. Don’t make that mistake; it can be costly… in many ways! It’s easier to have a professional make sure everything is being done properly so that you don’t have to worry about it.

Maple resident fined $2,000 for failing to file GST/HST returns

Newmarket, Ontario, September 7, 2012 … The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) announced today that on September 5, 2012, Bernardino Ianeiro of Maple, Ontario, was fined $2,000 in the Ontario Court of Justice in Newmarket, Ontario, after pleading guilty to two counts of failing to file GST/HST returns. He was fined $1,000 per count, for a total of $2,000. He has 60 days to pay the fine.

Mr. Ianeiro failed to file two annual GST/HST returns for the periods ending December 31, 1998 and December 31, 2000. All outstanding returns have since been filed.

The preceding information was obtained from the court records.

In addition to the fines imposed by the courts, individuals or corporations convicted of failing to file tax returns are still obligated to file the tax returns and pay the full amount of taxes owing, plus interest, as well as any civil penalties that may be assessed by the CRA.

Taxpayers who have not filed returns for previous years, or who have not reported all of their income, can still voluntarily correct their tax affairs. They may not be penalized or prosecuted if they make a valid disclosure before they become aware of any compliance action being initiated by the CRA against them. These taxpayers may only have to pay the taxes owing, plus interest.

 

Improper Reporting of Commission Income

Secret commissions and tax evasion result in jail and $150,000 fine

Barrie, Ontario, March 26, 2012…The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) announced today that on March 21, 2012,  Darwin Whitton, of Stayner, pleaded guilty in the Ontario Court of Justice in Barrie to one count of tax evasion and two counts of receiving secret commissions. Whitton was sentenced to six months in jail, 17 months of house

Whitton, a former employee of Honda of Canada Mfg. in Alliston, Ontario, requested money and goods from Barry Thompson in exchange for his recommendation to Honda to hire Barry R. Thompson Enterprises Ltd. to perform electrical contracting work at Honda’s Alliston facility. Whitton did not report a total of $622,797 of money and goods provided by Thompson Enterprises on his 2003 to 2008 personal income tax returns. As a result, Whitton evaded paying $177,305of federal income tax during those years.

Whitton informed Thompson of Honda budget limits for electrical contracts as well as the bids of other suppliers. He encouraged Thompson to submit inflated bids approaching Honda’s budget limits and competitive to the bids of other suppliers. In exchange for using his influence to ensure that Thompson Ltd. was the successful bidder, Whitton received 90% of the inflated portion of these bids as a kickback.

In addition to money, Whitton requested and received a sports utility vehicle, two snowmobiles, tractor and accessories, a travel trailer, swimming pool plus related accessories, two all terrain vehicles and trailer, a large screen television, kitchen renovations and fencing.

The preceding information was obtained from the court records.

“Paying taxes is the law,” said Darrell Mahoney, Assistant Commissioner, Ontario Region, CRA. “The vast majority of Canadians accept their tax obligations. In fairness to those law-abiding citizens, the CRA will continue to conduct audit, prosecution, and other enforcement activities on the small minority of individuals who try to evade their obligations,” he added.

Individuals who have not filed returns for previous years, or who have not reported all of their income, can still voluntarily correct their tax affairs. They may not be penalized or prosecuted if they make a valid disclosure before they become aware of any compliance action being initiated by the CRA against them. These individuals may only have to pay the taxes owing, plus interest. More information on the Voluntary Disclosures Program (VDP) can be found on the CRA’s website at www.cra.gc.ca/voluntarydisclosures.

Claiming Business Expenses

As a rule, you can deduct any reasonable current expense you paid or will have to pay to earn business income. The expenses you can deduct include any GST/HST you incur on these expenses less the amount of any input tax credit claimed.

You cannot deduct personal expenses. Deduct only the business part of expenses from business income. In addition, you cannot claim expenses you incur to buy capital property.

For more information, see the List of expenses below.

Note
When you claim the GST/HST you paid on your business expenses as an input tax credit, reduce the amounts of the business expenses you show on Form T2125, Statement of Business or Professional Activities, by the amount of the input tax credit. Do this when the GST/HST for which you are claiming the input tax credit was paid or became payable.

Similarly, subtract any other rebate, grant, or assistance from the expense to which it applies. Enter the net figure on the proper line. Any such assistance you claim for the purchase of depreciable property used in your business will affect your claim for capital cost allowance.

If you cannot apply the rebate, grant, or assistance you received to reduce a particular expense, or to reduce an asset’s capital cost, include the total on line 8230 in Part 3 of Form T2125.

Professionalism and your tax professional

Everyone wants to minimize the taxes they pay, but at what cost? If you’re dealing with a “professional” who lacks professionalism, you’re taking your chances. There is no amount of savings that is worth dealing with a company that doesn’t insist on doing things the right way.

Toronto tax preparer guilty of over million dollar tax fraud scheme

Toronto, Ontario, March 21, 2012…The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) announced today that Christopher Paterson of Toronto pleaded guilty on March 19, 2012, in the Ontario Court of Justice in Toronto, to one count of fraud over $5,000. Paterson received an 18 month conditional sentence and 200 hours of community service. In addition, Paterson cannot prepare or file any tax returns or tax appeals on behalf of any person other than himself. Paterson must maintain employment and comply with other statutory conditions.

A CRA investigation revealed that Paterson prepared 144 false income tax returns for the 2004 to 2008 tax years on behalf of himself and 87 clients. He claimed a total of $1,094,559 in false charitable donation deductions on these fraudulent returns, reducing the amount of federal taxes owed. As a result, refunds totalling $313,992 were issued to Paterson’s clients to which they were not entitled. In addition, Paterson also attempted to claim another $154,148 in false charitable donations claims on 16 of his clients’ income tax returns, resulting in those clients attempting to understate federal taxes by $44,255.

Paterson operated a tax preparation business called TaxTips1. Paterson sold false charitable donations receipts of various amounts to his clients for a fee. He then used these charitable donation receipts to prepare his clients income tax returns, and submitted the false receipts along with the returns to the CRA.

The information in this news release was obtained from the court records.

Taxpayers who claim false expenses, credits or rebates from the government are subject to serious consequences. They are liable not only for corrections to their tax returns and payment of the full amount of tax owing, but also to penalties and interest. In addition, if convicted of tax evasion, the court may fine them up to 200% of the tax evaded and sentence them for up to a five-year jail term.

Individuals who have not filed returns for previous years, or who have not reported all of their income, can still voluntarily correct their tax affairs. They may not be penalized or prosecuted if they make a valid disclosure before they become aware of any compliance action being initiated by the CRA against them. These individuals may only have to pay the taxes owing, plus interest. More information on the Voluntary Disclosures Program (VDP) can be found on the CRA’s website at www.cra.gc.ca/voluntarydisclosures.

Time limits for claiming ITC

Most registrants claim their input tax credits (ITCs) when they file their GST/HST return for the reporting period in which they made their purchases. However, you may have ITCs that you did not claim when you filed the return for the corresponding reporting period.

If so, you can claim those ITCs on a future GST/HST return as long as it is filed by the due date of the return for the last reporting period that ends within four years after the end of the reporting period in which the ITC could have first been claimed.

Example
You are a quarterly filer and you buy office furniture in the reporting period October 1, 2011, to December 31, 2011, for which you can claim an ITC. The due date of the return for this reporting period is January 31, 2012.

The last reporting period in which you can claim an ITC for the tax you were charged on the office furniture is the reporting period October 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015. The due date for this return is January 31, 2016. This means that you can claim the ITC in any return due and filed by January 31, 2016.

To support your claim for ITCs, the invoices or receipts you use must contain specific information. See the chart in Sales invoices for GST/HST registrants, for more information.

The time limit for claiming ITCs is reduced to two years for:

  • listed financial institutions (other than a corporation that is deemed to be a financial institution because it has made an election to have certain supplies deemed to be financial services and that election is in effect); and
  • persons with annual taxable supplies of goods and services of more than $6 million for each of the two preceding fiscal years.

However, the two-year limit does not apply to the following persons even if they fall into the second category listed above (these persons have four years to claim their ITCs):

  • charities; and
  • persons whose supplies of goods and services (other than financial services) during either of the two preceding fiscal years are at least 90% taxable supplies.

Under the two-year limit, you can claim your ITCs on any future return that is filed by the due date of the return for the last reporting period that ends within two years after the end of your fiscal year that includes the reporting period in which the ITC could have first been claimed.

Example
You are a monthly filer with a fiscal year end of December 31. You buy goods in the reporting period September 1 to 30, 2011, for which you can claim an ITC. The fiscal year that includes the September 2011 return ends on December 31, 2011. You can claim the ITC on any later return for a reporting period that ends by December 31, 2013 and is filed by January 31, 2014.